Magazine article Artforum International

Anne Hardy: The Common Guild

Magazine article Artforum International

Anne Hardy: The Common Guild

Article excerpt

Anne Hardy

THE COMMON GUILD

Two site-specific structures in two near-identical rooms: Anne Hardy's TWIN FIELDS, 2015, shared a similar architectural starting point, but the outcomes could hardly have been more different. Drawing on the dimensions of the Common Guild's domestic-scale galleries-ground--floor and second-floor front rooms of a converted Victorian town house--Hardy designed and assembled a contrasting pair of voluminous, made-to-measure constructions. These bulky, rickety forms--fashioned from basic builder's materials such as timber beams, plasterboard, and concrete blocks--were unlikely furnishings, clashing dramatically with the restrained period elegance of the galleries.

The addition of these rough-and-ready materials temporarily transformed the rooms into curious, quasi-theatrical sets. For followers of Hardy's work, such elaborate scene-building will be broadly familiar. She is known for meticulously realizing quietly edgy fictional environments, using an eclectic collection of junk-shop oddments to create detailed, life-size mock-ups of mysterious, imaginary interiors. These can be mundane places such as airless storerooms and workshops, or more exotic ones--for instance, private clubs and other out-of-the-way meeting places where particular rules or rituals might apply. Such settings are envisaged at moments when they are empty of people: stalled in a state of untidy aftermath, but bearing enigmatic traces of obsessive solitary endeavor or oppressive group activity. Until recently, Hardy's approach was to capture the anxious atmospheres of these physically fabricated scenes in photographs--disassembling the sets as soon as they were captured by the camera. In the past few years, however, she has shifted emphasis from 2-D to 3-D.

At the Common Guild, the central scenes were rudimentary rooms-within-rooms, but Hardy adopted distinct approaches to space and structure in each case. The ground-floor gallery housed an intricately scrappy, open-sided wooden framework, propped up precariously on stilts made from irregular concrete bricks. This was a cramped, chaotic space divided by makeshift pillars and partitions--some with great holes bashed through them--and haphazardly decorated with a puzzling assortment of found and handmade objects (including fragments of shattered masonry and peculiar combinations of small, pyramidal objects). …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.